Seven Underlying Causes of Racism

Seven Underlying Causes of Racism

Many of us are disturbed by the increase of racial tensions that seems to be permeating the news these days. What I find especially upsetting is that this racial divide, especially between Blacks and Whites has not seemed to improve in many parts of the country for centuries.

I think it’s time that we envision an America where we can see beyond race.

I want to live in a country where we value each other’s cultures and experiences, where we try to forgive both ourselves and each other for past wrongs, and where we can recognize our privileges, and support those who don’t have the same opportunities.

But to first stop racism, we first have to understand what causes it in the first place.

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The Power of Our Friend’s Subconscious Influence

The Power of Our Friend’s Subconscious Influence

We have all probably noticed the subtle influence we get from our friends. Maybe they want a beer after a hike, desert after a meal, or maybe they just got a cool new phone.   At some point, you are likely to want what they have.   These social influences are much more powerful than we realize, and as a healer, I regularly see the profound impact of our environment. The messages we receive implicitly or explicitly shape who we are and how we think, and one of the most powerful ways to improve as a person is to be picky about who you spend time with.

What evidence is there to suggest that who we surround ourselves with matters?

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The Power of Releasing the Heart Wall with the Emotion Code

The Power of Releasing the Heart Wall with the Emotion Code

I had a client who had been single for almost 4 yrs., and never had been married. She really wanted to have a family, and felt like her clock was ticking.   She asked me to check if she had a heart wall, and we discovered

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The Real Reasons People Are Cruel

The Real Reasons People Are Cruel

I used to keep abreast of the news, but I find that I no longer can. Why? Because the news is barraged with reports of things cruel people said, cruel people did or cruel new laws that were passed, and I’m finding it too distressing to follow closely.

Similarly, I’ve noticed in my personal life and as a Holistic Brain Health practitioner, cruelty seems to be on the rise.

I was thinking this as I discovered the latest issue of Psychology Today, where the featured article discussed the rise of toxic behavior. According to the global communications firm Weber Shandwick, a record number of Americans (69% ) believe that American has a civility problem.   It was 65% is 2010.

So what is causing the increase in cruelty?

According to the research by Weber Shandwick, most people blame politicians and social media.   As I wrote in my article Why We Lack Control Over Our Thoughts, our environment and what we are exposed to has a profound influence on what we think. If we have any tendency to be cruel, the cruelty we see regularly in the news, in our social media and entertainment gives us unconscious permission to do the same.   We are not immune from our environment. If we were, politicians and advertisers wouldn’t spend as much as they do trying to influence us.

That being said, we don’t all respond to watching cruelty in the same way.

Interestingly, in a study published in 2014, researchers showed that watching violence activates the brains differently in aggressive people than calm people. Aggressive people had reduced activity in the decision making part of their brain (the orbitofrontal cortex), and more activity in the emotional center of the brain (the amygdala).   They also showed a rise in blood pressure.

So if aggressive people respond differently to watching violence than calm people, what makes people unkind in the first place?

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Is it Really “Common Sense”?

Is it Really “Common Sense”?

When I hear the phrase “It’s just common sense”, I cringe.

Why?   Because our version of “common sense” is based on our environment and past experiences.   What might be common sense to an American, can be very different than what is considered common sense to someone born in a different culture.

Case in point:

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Improve all your Relationships with this Simple Mindset Shift

Improve all your Relationships with this Simple Mindset Shift

Growing up, my parents valued hard work over everything else.   One of my father’s favorite sayings was, “I don’t believe in having too much fun”.   Having play dates was not encouraged or often allowed!

Therefore, I didn’t have a lot of practice making friends or developing healthy relationships.   Without good modeling for what healthy relationships looked like, I had to figure things out the hard way, through a tons of trial and error.  I suffered for decades, feeling like I was all alone and incapable of being loved!

That was why I was thrilled to learn
about the Smart Couple podcast by Jayson Gaddis. Its purpose is to give couples the tools they need to have win-win relationships. As a single person, it helped me figure out what I needed to do to have healthy relationships, and what I would need from a future partner.   But another key benefit is that what he shares can be applied to improving all of our relationships with friends, family, people we work with, and even ourselves!

I took a class with him to dive more deeply into the material, and got a lot out of it. But if I were asked to give you the most valuable tip I learned, this mindset shift would be it.   I feel so strongly about this analogy, that I believe if it were spread far and wide, it could change the world.

What is this valuable mindset shift?

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